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Dan Doughtie

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Flötzinger Hell aus Rosenheim |Rosenheim, Germany Another from the Man Bag. How disappointing. And it’s another Hell. How disappointing. It looked like a Hell. It tasted like a Hell. It smelled like a Hell. It was a Hell. This brewery dates back to 1543 so they have some experience and it shows. After tasting four Helles so far I guess I can make a comparison. I enjoyed it. Would have preferred something dark and winter-like but it was a good beer. This was a very mild beer. The aroma was good especially after it warms up. Kinda bready. You kind of forget you are tasting a beer and find yourself just enjoying it while you prep dinner. Maybe that’s a sign of a good beer. You forget you are drinking it. Nothing to jump out and tell you that something is different, forcing you to stop and think if it’s…

Landgang Pils |Hamburg, Germany Yikes another from the Man Bag. This is the third beer in the calendar that was in the Mannerhandtasche XXL I bought in the summer. The label on this brew creeped me out back when I first tried it in September. It’s got the same Best Buy date as the previous. The label looks like a recruiting poster for the Village People. The sailor has a hop bud on his cap. They call this one a Pils which is a bit more modern form of Pilsner but since Pilsner is originally a Czech brew calling it a Pils gives it more of a non-Czech feel. As I said before Pilsners are typically not my favorite. Some are more bitter than others. This one is a little on the lighter side. It’s got the Pilsner bitterness but is slightly smoother also that’s always a mystery how a…

Ladenburger Weizenbock Hell |Neuler, Germany Now we are getting somewhere. This is a Weizenbock. Getting a bit darker as compared to the clear Helles they seem to feature. Nice cloudy amber almost looking like fresh squeezed cider. Nice and malty. Slightly sweet (real sweet compared to the Helles and Pilsners). A bit bready on the third sip. I taste raisins. Not sweet raisins but the underlying flavor. I love the mouthfeel. This is a beer I can enjoy at Christmas. At 8% this is the highest ABV so far. I found it on their website. I would love to try their Old Swabian Dark. Here is what they say about this beer: “WEIZENBOCK HELL: A classic, top-fermented, golden yellow bock beer, which won several awards in Europe and the World. Three times in a row (2014/2015/2016) the European Beer Star Gold Award and at the World Beer Cup 2016 in…

Schwarzbräu Marie Hausbrendel Hell |Zusmarshausen, Germany I sorta did my own calendar tonight. I attended the Savannah Riverkeepers Bells and Buoys fundraiser and had Service Brewing Rally Point and Savannah River’s No Jacket Required on tap. When I unloaded the beer from the Advent Calendar earlier in the day I noticed it was another Hell. The label has a young traditionally dressed German lass carrying mugs of beer. I was tempted to say “fräulein” but I read that that term has fallen out of favor and is considered offensive. I don’t want to offend anyone especially over beer. I really enjoyed Service Brewing’s Rally Point Pilsner. It reminded me of the Käuzle from the night before (a German Pilsner). This was on tap so it was pretty fresh. I enjoyed pairing it with the grits from the grits bar. I topped by grits with cheese and bacon after stirring in…

Kauzen-Brau Käuzle German Pilsner |Ochsenfurt, Germany Okay. I’m feeling a bit cheated here. I was hoping for a new tasting experience throughout Advent but this is one of the same brews from the Man Bag. The Best By Dates are the same so they were pretty much produced at the same time. The difference is I bought the Man Bag six months ago. The label has an owl on it and the inscription Ein Käuzle unters Schnäuzle (“A screech-owl under the whiskers!”). These guys are youngsters. They’ve only been brewing since 1809. So this is my second time drinking this. I also tried it back on Sept. 9. Pretty much the same notes. I wrote back then this was similar to another Pilsner in the Man Bag but with a nicer mouthfeel. But that mouthfeel is either perceived as slightly bitter or slightly dry. So to my palette is tastes…

Teisnacher 1543 Festmarzen |Teisnach, Germany When I pulled it out of the box I got real excited. I really like Marzen-style beers. Is there a difference between a Marzen and a Festmarzen? Don’t know, but I don’t think so. So what is a Marzen? I turned to my handy Oxford Companion to Beer (you got to buy this for your favorite beer lover for Christmas). It’s got a lot of stuff on Marzen. Ah, the plot thickens. Under marzenbier it says “also see Vienna Lager.” Yesterday’s calendar beer was a Wiener Lager or “Vienna Lager.” Marzen” comes from the term Beers of March because they had to make a lot of beer before it got too hot. These brews made in March where often a bit stronger so they could store long into the summer months. Sounds like the stronger IPAs the British would brew so they could survive the…

Egerer Wiener Lager |Großköllnbach, Germany Of course I thought I needed to be eating hot dogs or brats when I saw the label “Wiener Lager.” I counted to 10 and decided you can’t judge a beer by its label. Well you can but not one created in a foreign country and you aren’t familiar with the terms. The Egerer website doesn’t mention this beer. (They also produced the Alms Hell from Advent Day 3). The tasting app says “Wiener Lager is a beer style by Anton Dreher, the Austrian brewing legend. He combined cold fermentation with knowledge of English malting technology and thus created the Viennese warehouse as we know it today.” 5.1% ABV. So obviously they used a cut and paste translation like I have been doing because I was stumped by “Viennese warehouse.” Warehouse is German for Lager. Weiner is a demonym of Vienna according to Wikipedia. It…

Kurpfalzbräu Helles |Plankstadt, Germany Another Helles. Out of 7 brews 3 have been Helles. After opening top of the box to free yesterday’s brew I saw a Helles that was featured in the Man Bag. Not sure if drinking a helles every few days allows me to appreciate which ones are more appealing or make comparisons as to which I like better (not all stouts are created equal). I’m not going to spend the time filling out a silly scorecard so I can rank them and use some nebulous score to determine which I liked better. So, here goes. Pale straw color (like a helles). Clear as can be (like a helles). Yummy real cold. An edge of bitter hoppiness but not on the tongue. A bit of sweetness on the tip of the tongue. Not an after dinner drink because you’ll be too full to enjoy. Maybe later in…

Herrnbrau Zwickl Kellerbier |Ingolstadt, Germany I was ready to enjoy a beer. It was a Monday. I was busy all day but didn’t seem to get anything done. It is my night to cook and I was trying to figure out what I could pull together. I had a bag of those small fancy potatoes Publix has on sale. Some are red, some black, some blue. They can be pretty tasty. I was worried they might start growing little roots so I cut them up, tossed them with grated parmesan, olive oil and some Greek seasoning. Tossed them in the oven and baked the hell out of them. Next was very thin chicken breast slices cooked in zesty Italian dressing with some Slap Your Momma seasoning (spices things up). A bag-o-salad and I’m there. Well if you’re gonna cook you might as well have a beer to fill in the…

It’s Day 5 of the Brewer’s Advent Calendar and to me this is the beer I wanted to have when I bought this Advent Calendar. Not this specific brand but this taste. I couldn’t help but adapt Mel Brook’s line from Space Balls “May the Schwartz be with you.” Kraftbierwerkstatt’s Der Schwarze Bock is dark, roast, smooth, chocolaty. Yummy. Now under full disclosure this was kind of a beer slushy. I but it in the freezer to get it chilled and took too long to take it out. Beer’s freezing point is slightly lower than water but beer has water in it. So the beer was in a supercooled state. When you disturb the supercooled state, like opening a can or bottle and letting the CO2 in the mixture do it’s thing then the freezing point increases beyond the current temperature and the beer will start to freeze. It was…

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